The Don Rosa World
Covers/illustrations - Barks references - Interviews, critics and other texts
- Index of Rosa publications - Animated Rosa gif's - Links to related sites
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The Don Rosa World -Interview by Didier Ghez
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Don Rosa by Didier Ghez
Introduction

Keno Don Rosa is considered by many Disney comic book readers today as the best Duck artist of the new generation. He started his Duck drawings as a comic book fan in the early '70s. At the time he was answering fan mail for the American magazine called The Rocket Blast Comic Collector, while running his family's construction company. He was already, at the time, one of the most passionate admirers of Carl Barks' works.

In the mid '80s, when Gladstone started publishing American Disney comics again for the first time in 20 years, he sent the his first Disney Duck story "Son of the Sun" which was published in 1987. He has never ceased to write and draw Disney Duck stories since then, first for Gladstone and then Egmont.

The power of Don Rosa's stories, many would say, comes in great part from his unbelievaby interesting scenario, that he writes himself. Among his best stories one can note for example "His Majesty McDuck" in which $crooge realises that he can claim sovereignty for the land that surrounds his money bin.

He does just that, of course, to avoid paying taxes. You might imagine the problems that follow.

But the two main types of stories that make Don so famous and controversial are the sequels to Barks stories that he wrote ... from "Return to Xanadu" to "The Lost Charts of Columbus", as well as the amazing saga in 15 chapters (and growing) that depicts The Life and Times of $crooge McDuck. {This is now shortened in this article to Lo$}.

Those stories all tend to enrich Barks' universe and always play on two different levels: a very strong plot for the casual reader and some in-jokes and subtle references for the fans. According to Don mythology, for example, $crooge was born in 1867, exactly 100 years before Carl Barks stopped drawing him. This explains the strange cover, RV 16.

We are currently celebrating the 50th anniversary of $crooge creation by Barks in 1947 and I thought it would be interesting to see how Don imagines $crooge's 50th birthday that took place in 1917 according to his universe. I hope you will enjoy his views on this very universe.

Interview in Summer 1995

Didier: Could you tell us about your career before writing and drawing Disney comic books?

Don: Before I started writing and drawing Duck comics for Gladstone in 1987, I operated the family construction company which my grandfather started here in Louisville when he came from Italy in 1905. My education is in civil engineering, not cartooning. The only cartooning I ever did, or even intended to do, was as a hobby for school papers, comic fanzines, local newspapers and for my own amusement when I was very young. And the most important part of that "training" was the comic books I did that noone else has ever seen, when I was 5-13 years old.

Didier: What do you consider as the big landmarks of your career as a Disney comic book writer?

Don: The biggest landmarks in my career might be the publication of my first Duck comic (which was also my first professional comic job of ANY sort), "The Son of the Sun" in Uncle $crooge #219. It boggles my mind STILL to imagine I actually wrote and drew an entire issue of the very comic I loved so much from my earliest childhood memory. Nine years later, it still seems like a dream. The next landmark would be when I went to work for Egmont. Another when I made my first trip to Europe to help promote the Duck comics. And then, certainly, when I won the Eisner Award for Best Serialised Story of 1995.


The Don Rosa World
Covers/illustrations - Barks references - Interviews, critics and other texts
- Index of Rosa publications - Animated Rosa gif's - Links to related sites
- Updates on TDRW - Guestbook